Author : Rohit Gore
Publisher : Grapevine
The Circle of Three is the story of three people who have lost all hope in life. One day, their paths cross and their destinies are forever changed.
Thirteen year old Aryan Khosla has no friends, rarely meets his busy and quarrelling parents, and is tormented by a gang of school bullies. He feels his birth was a mistake and thinks no one would notice if he disappeared from this world.
Thirty-three year old Ria Marathe, a successful scriptwriter, lost her husband and only son in a terrible accident, and later came to know her childhood sweetheart husband was cheating on her for a long time. Faced with a lifetime of misery, she has decided to commit suicide.
Sixty-three year old Rana Rathod, a long forgotten author, has carelessly lived off the trust created by his wealthy family and feels betrayed by his two children who sided with his wife during their brutal divorce thirty years back. He fears he is going to die a bitter man.
Will Aryan lose his childhood to his loneliness? Will Ria lose her life to her tragedy? Will Rana lose his dignity to his past sins? The Circle of Three is about finding a new beginning in life, of forgiving and ultimately, finding hope.
The writer makes a strong case of hope in seamlessly hopeless situations. The story revolves between three unhappy protagonists whose live entwined and resolved in an almost telepathic manner. All these characters are inherently broken, they have a strong back stories to justify their present behaviour but all are yearning to get back to a better life within the realms of worldly limitations. There is depth to each character and a rare sensitivity specially to the thoughts of the 13-year old. You may find lot of situations implausible and reactions over-the-top but you are willing to over look those flaws in a narrative which is keeping you hooked.
What hurts the book in the end is the length which is way too long at over 250 odd pages. If you can somehow get past this minor glitch, there is a strong sense of reassurance prevalent through the narrative regarding a positive approach of life and how not to harbour negative thoughts. The author does well in not inundating the narrative with too many characters which is generally too common these days in Indian fiction. As a result, all three characters are neatly etched out and the metamorphosis of each of them over the course of the story does not look contrived.
I am going with 3/5 for Rohit Gore's 'Circle of Three'. A little shorter, better edited and more nuanced this could have been a more rewarding read. In its present form, it is a one time read. Be patient with it, you may be pleasantly surprised at various plot points. It has got its heart at the right place, but you may find other body parts scattered all over.